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In this day and age, we have enough stressors in our lives; why not eat in a way that reduces stress, gives us energy and allows us to feel our best all day long? Add the following foods to your diet to combat stress and ensure a mood boost for an overall awesome day!
It’s high in omega 3’s and B vitamins and has been shown to boost serotonin levels as well as suppress production of anxious hormones. Other great sources of omega 3’s include tuna, sardines, walnuts, and flax seeds
They help produce serotonin (the feel good hormone) and help fight anxieties negative effects – AND bonus: whole grains are full of fiber that aids in digestion and keeps hunger at bay. Try oatmeal, quinoa, whole wheat pasta, brown rice and 100% whole wheat bread.
These help lower blood pressure and decrease stress on the heart. Just be careful with portion size, 1 serving = 1 oz or about the size of your palm. Try to eat around 1-2 servings per day for maximum stress reducing benefits.
And other foods high in vitamin C aid in lowering stress hormones and help with increasing immunity! I particularly love the way peeling an orange can reduce stress and help boost your mood from the occasional citrus splash. Other foods high in vitamin C are strawberries, kiwi, bell peppers (all colors), broccoli and green leafy veggies like spinach and kale.
It is high in both magnesium and calcium (and a ton of other nutrients) which help our bodies react to stress more efficiently. Try spinach or other greens mixed in with soups, in egg scrambles or throw it into your favorite smoothies for a stress reducing meal.
Yay for chocolate lovers! An ounce and a half of dark chocolate (70% cocoa or higher) daily has been shown to reduce stress hormones, including cortisol. The antioxidants in dark chocolate have also been shown to relax the walls of your blood vessels leading to a decrease in blood pressure and increase in overall circulation.
About the Author: Abigail Dougherty
A big believer that getting healthy and feeling good in ones own skin can be a catalyst for joy and positive change in peoples lives — Abigail Joy Dougherty is a registered dietitian nutritionist based in Tampa, FL and the founder of The Soul of Health Nutrition where she focuses on bringing joy into the world of food and nutrition through connecting science based information with real life experience.
In addition to being a weekly contributor and nutrition expert on the local news in Tampa, Abigail also contracts with businesses and sports teams to promote a healthier culture within their organization through presentations, workshops and one-on-one coaching. As the minor league and player development consulting dietitian for the New York Yankees, she also consults with Sprouts Farmers Market as a Brand Influencer in the Tampa Bay area and spends her free time with her husband, exploring the outdoors and volunteering with the Salvation Army.